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Debate and Forensics Team Returns to MWSU

An organization at Missouri Western is making a strong comeback. After being off campus for more than a decade, competitive debate and forensics is back like they never left.
(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Missouri Western State University's Debate and Forensics team has its foot in the right direction.

The organization is back on campus after being gone for more than a decade.

The time away didn't stop the group from picking up right where it left off.

"All of our kids are working so hard. And to see them have this instant success just speaks volumes of the hard work they're putting in," said Abigayle Richardson.

Richardson, a Savannah native, works with the seven members on public speaking.

She focuses on making sure they research, write, develop and memorize their speeches.

"I work with them on the writing portion and then we work really, really hard to make sure it's delivered," said Richardson.

She and her co-director said watching them perform is rewarding.

"I think it gives them a lot of confidence and boosts their mentality and let's everyone know that this is a program that matters," said Sohail Jouya.

Jouya spent some of his childhood in St. Joseph.

He said being a leader of the team takes him down memory lane.

"It's really, really cool to come back and witness the campus evolve and to be a part of something I had no idea, at such a young age, I would ever be a part of," said Jouya.

Jouya and Richardson's goal is to continue to bring the debate team back to life.

"They are building something from the ground up. This is, in their eyes, something that's really, really grass root. They have control over it, and they're really guiding the direction of this program," said Jouya.

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